My Journey To Health, The Habits of Hobbits

ahobbitThe first question to answer is “What do the habits of hobbits have to do with getting to good health?”  The answer is simple.  Everything!

Those of you who read this column regularly know that I find great inspiration from fiction.  And there is much that can learned from hobbits if we consider a few facts, expand on them and use a bit of imagination.

What do we know about hobbits off the tops of our heads.  Well, they are a small people.  They enjoy six meals a day and they have very tough and hairy feet which allows them to go shoe-less.  We know they bake as bread is mentioned in The Hobbit and The Lord of The Rings.  Seed cake is also mentioned in The Hobbit as Bilbo’s home is invaded by dwarves and Bilbo wonders about the provisions in his larder.  We know they drink both wine and beer.   We know that they enjoy bacon eggs, apples, strawberries and cream and other simple food.  We know that Bilbo liked to walk.  He even had maps of the shire where he had marked his favorite places to stroll.  Bilbo even wrote a walking song.

So what can be inferred from the above facts.  The Hobbit society was agricultural in nature.  We know they kept chickens, pigs and cattle.  We know they grew apples and strawberries raspberries, lettuce, grapes and coffee beans at the very least.  We also know they grew tobacco but it seemed they used it responsibly.  They must have grown grain as there was bread and cake and you need hops to brew beer.

What can be pulled from these facts that can help with our health.  Let’s start with six meals a day.  Eating six times a day is a healthy habit to get into.  These meals should not be meals that are indulgent in fact I would bet indulgent meals of any kind were not a daily experience in The Shire.  The six meals were mostly rustic healthy whole foods.  Breakfast may have been Bacon and eggs, but second breakfast was more like a snack and may have been whole grain bread and butter and maybe some tea.  Eleveses may have been some cheese and fruit,as the hobbits by that time were more than likely in the fields working by then and would be carrying their food with them.

Lunch could have consisted of a sit-down meal or again something carried into the fields or pastures.  Whole grain breads maybe a little meat or a small meat pie.  We know Tolkien loved rural England and lunch was often pies in rural England one savory and one sweet.  So meat and vegetables in one and fruit in the other.

Tea would be taken at home in the latter part of the afternoon.  We know that hobbits liked 6 meals a day but Tolkien stipulated that with “when they could get them.”  Tea may have been tea, bread and butter, small cakes and maybe small sandwiches.  The richer the hobbit family the grander the tea.  Supper we know was a hearty meal that the whole household sat down together to eat.  We find this to be true when Frodo Sam Merry and Pippin all sit down at Farmer Maggot’s table.  We even know the menu, or at least some of it.  There was beer, bacon, mushrooms and other solid farm fair.  There must have been a bit of meat as the dogs “layed by the fire and gnawed rinds (cheese) and cracked bones.

I don’t think that meat played a large part in a hobbit diet.  First hobbits were small and bringing down a cow for beef would have taken a lot of work and many hobbits to do it.  Mutton and lamb?  Possibly but again these animals would be used for other purposes.  The hobbits would need wool for clothing and so killing the animals for food would take a way a continued source of making fabric so my guess is there was a small amount of meat per meal and none at all at some.  Maybe a four ounce portion an many dietitians suggest.

We know that there were vegetables and potatoes and turnips cabbages and carrots too.  We are also aware id the hobbits deep love for mushrooms and the films suggest tomatoes.  Bread was a staple food, as it is in almost all cultures, but not white bread.  These would have been whole grain rustic loaves, loaded with flavor and nutrition.  Apples, for sure, as well as strawberries a hobbits diet was bright and colorful.  Not completely vegetarian but much more so than what we consume with the large amounts of meat we make a habit of eating.

The hobbits exercised because in an agricultural society the exercise was built in to the day.  Planting, weeding and harvesting was all physical work as was milling grain into flour.  Tending sheep and cattle was also physical as the animals would be moved from place to place in order to graze.  Shepherds and herders had much to do.  And there is no doubt that all of the hobbit food was organic, could you imagine Sam using a pesticide?

We know that Bilbo liked to walk.  We also know that ponies were available but not many road and so a hobbits feet were the main source of transportation.  Also feeding ponies takes a lot and what animals hobbits had were probably used more for work that for puling a carriage.

So a hobbit life style was a healthy lifestyle.  A lifestyle that consisted of hard work whole foods and regular exercise.  This type of lifestyle is something we all should aspire to and actually adapt to the best of our ability.

As you know my goal right now is to become vegan.  To eliminate animal products all together and I am working toward that, but in the meantime, living like a hobbit seems a great beginning.  Now if only I could get Mrs. Maggot to invite me to dinner.

The post My Journey To Health, The Habits of Hobbits also appeared on PCM Lifestyle.

My Journey To Health, Becoming Vegan

aveganIt has been a little over sixty days since I put My Journey To Health down for a while.  You might call it 60 days in prison, and it  was in a way.  I have been flipping around between emotional illness and physical illness during that time and my life was a mess.  Some days I barely got out of bed for one of or the other of those reasons.  The worst days were the ones I couldn’t get out of bed because of both of the reasons.  Now, however I am on the mend and ready to start again.  This however will be a battle that is totally new and I am excited to be taking you on the journey with me.

My psychologist has made the suggestion that I go vegan.  This is something I am easing into.  I figure by the middle of June, the change should be complete.  There is also food in my freezer that I do not wish to throw out when that is gone the change will have been made.

Becoming vegan means that you get all your nourishment from plants.  So vegetables fruits grains nuts beans are your whole diet.  This can be called Plant Power according to mu good friend Steve. A  Vegetarian, on the other hand is no meat but I believe dairy and eggs are allowed.  For a while I will be more vegetarian than vegan but the switch will happen eventually.

This is hard for me.  I like meat and to be honest I do not like green vegetables at all.  Broccoli literally makes me sick to my stomach.  So I will be going into grounds that I am very nervous about.  I believe I can do it, but it won’t be easy.

I guess a question that should be answered here is why am I doing this?  The answer is a bit complicated but here we go.  I think my psychologist believes that I would not only lose weight by following this kind of diet, but I may also rid my body of some of the poisons that processed food dumps into your body.  Eliminating those may help do a reset on some of my emotions.  Time and perseverance will tell.  Hanging with this will be the toughest part, especially if I smell bacon.

I need to confess here that I am a fast food junkie.  I did go with out sugar from the first of January until mid March but I did not go with out McDonald’s, Burger King, Arby’s or Boston Market.  Then there were Hungry Man Dinners and many other microwavable foods that was what I have been used to eating since my mom passed away.

I had been living with my folks for awhile as due to some physical problems and the emotional issues I cannot work.  Mom was a great cook and, not to be vain, I inherited that from her.  When she died it was like all the joy of cooking disappeared.  I have been upstairs, I have an apartment in the basement, a total of three times to use the kitchen in the last three years.

Exercise is the next hurdle to cross.  According to my psychiatrist I have boobitrapped myself when it comes to exercise.  After even a small amount of exercise I don’t feel good about what I have accomplished, in fact I feel extremely depressed and hopeless.  This is coming from the bad feelings I have about myself.  Those feelings are so intense that my brain actually won’t let me feel good about me.  Exercise at this point fuels my low self esteem instead of helping it.  Now what can be done about that?  Nothing!  I have to exercise anyway and allow my brain to adjust.  This will not be easy.

I have a lot more to say but for now this is enough.  It’s good to be back with you all and I hope you will follow me on my journey.  Next up is being healthy like a Hobbit.

The post My Journey To Health, Becoming Vegan also appeared on PCM Lifestyle.

Man’s Ode To Steak And Eggs Gets The Disney Treatment And Goes Viral


(PCM) Musician Aaron Ridge has created the latest viral video with his ode to steak and eggs, created using several short Snapchat videos that were sent to friends. Ridge hilariously sings about making his steak and egg breakfast in the same way it might sound if the montage were featured in a Disney animated feature.

Ridge’s friends found the video to be so hilarious that they urged him to compile the clips and create a full video for the song and post it on YouTube. Now, we can all have it stuck in our heads … thanks friends!  You can check it out below, although be warned … it is quite an ear worm!

The post Man’s Ode To Steak And Eggs Gets The Disney Treatment And Goes Viral appeared first on The World Of Pop Culture.

Teens Are Injuring Themselves With The Latest Stupid Internet Challenge, This Time With Banana Peels


(PCM) We knew it wouldn’t be long before yet again, teens begin to injure themselves by partaking in the latest internet viral challenge. This time it’s the #BananaPeelChallenge that is taking social media by storm.

Individuals who for some reason choose to partake in the challenge cause themselves to intentionally slip on a banana peel that has been left on the floor. Why? Just why, internet? This challenge is certainly just as stupid as it sounds and already teens are ending up getting seriously hurt after slipping, falling and hitting their heads.

One would hope that might knock some sense back into them, but no, this viral challenge is still continuing to pick up steam. The original post from Twitter user Jason Oakes can be found below:

The post Teens Are Injuring Themselves With The Latest Stupid Internet Challenge, This Time With Banana Peels also appeared on PCM Lifestyle.

Did You Know You Can Purchase Raw Meat From A Vending Machine In France?


(PCM) We have heard of a lot of interesting objects that can be available for purchase in vending machines throughout the world, but raw meat is a new one, even for us! Residents of Paris now have the option to pick up raw meat such as sausages, steaks, and ham directly from a vending machine that has been set up in the city.

The area in which the vending machine is located has no shortage of local butcher shops and eateries, however the owners of L’ami Txulette, decided they still wanted to invest about $45,000 into setting up an outdoor vending machine in hopes of picking up sales on Sunday and Monday, the two days the physical store is closed, as well as, after hours sales for people looking to put together late night meals.

The meat is vacuum-sealed and of course the vending machine is refrigerated and customer have a choice of traditional delicatessen offerings including duck confit and beef carpaccio. The machine will take both cash or credit, however the products are prices about 20 euro cents higher than what they would cost in the traditional shop, but hey, you’ve got to pay for convenience right?

While baguette dispensing vending machines are wildly popular throughout France, the meat vending machines are still in the very early stages, however owners continue to remain hopeful that the trend will eventually begin to pick up steam.

The post Did You Know You Can Purchase Raw Meat From A Vending Machine In France? also appeared on PCM Lifestyle.

A Willy Wonka-Themed Restaurant Is In The Works For Universal’s CityWalk


(PCM) Might as well throw our dieting plans out the window now as the news has been revealed that a Willy Wonka-themed restaurant called “Toothsome Chocolate Factory” will be opening at Universal’s CityWalk later this year.

The restaurant of course will be dessert themed and feature a steam punk design that gives the idea that diners will be transported to various periods in time to obtain their ultimate sugar fix.  There will be more to the menu other than just sweets as the restaurant will also feature steaks, burgers, pasta, seafood, salad and an all-day brunch.Diners will indulge their appetites amidst towering smoke stacks, funky gadgetry, and staff wearing unique Steampunk fashion.

The desserts, however, are what will make Toothsome Chocolate Factory stand apart and if you ever dreamt about death by chocolate this place just might be your heaven. If they can find some kind of way to float us down the chocolate river then we will absolutely be in business!

Take a look at some of the restaurants planned milkshake offerings and dessert choices:

Chocolate x5: An explosion of chocolate with chocolate spirals, chunks, ice-cream and whipped cream.
Bacon Brittle: A fun twist on a breakfast favorite with bacon ice cream, bacon brittle, chocolate covered bacon and bacon caramel.
Espresso Buzzzz: A coffee lover’s dream with coffee ice-cream and chocolate covered beans.
Red Velvet: A milkshake topped with a Red Velvet cupcake… enough said.
Key Lime Pie: We’ve taken this classic Florida dessert and turned it into a delicious shake. You’ll even get a slice of pie on top!

The sundaes are anything but ordinary with flavors like Salted Caramel Flan, Chocolate Brownie Bark and S’mores. This extreme twist on a summer favorite features layers of chocolate ice-cream, chocolate sauce, marshmallow cream and graham crackers.

Sounds delicious and certainly a place we can’t wait to check out! No word yet on when the restaurant will officially by open for business!

The post A Willy Wonka-Themed Restaurant Is In The Works For Universal’s CityWalk also appeared on PCM Lifestyle.

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